Old Bay Shrimp Boil Skewers (Gluten-Free) for Progressive Eats

This entry is part 9 of 12 in the series Progressive Eats

Old Bay Shrimp Boil Skewers; 2014 Jane Bonacci, The Heritage Cook

Welcome to the inaugural edition of the Progressive Eats Virtual Supper Club! Do you remember the days when friends would gather to share a meal and have each course at a different person’s house? We thought it would be fun to create an online version. Each month we will be offering all of our readers a virtual progressive dinner. Collect all the recipes and throw your own parties with your family and friends! 

This month’s theme is Summer in the South with Lana of Never Enough Thyme leading the team. What a wonderful way to kick off this fun new adventure!

Old Bay Shrimp Boil Skewers; 2014 Jane Bonacci, The Heritage Cook

I love the South, especially the culinary heritage that is passed from generation to generation. You cannot sit down to a meal without having at least one recipe that is served at every family gathering – and they are always incredibly delicious!

Some of my favorite parties are shrimp or crab boils at the beach. Hot sunny days, cool water, and the glorious balmy evenings sitting around the fire. Cooking all the foods in a steaming pot of water, draining them and throwing everything on a paper-covered table, each person grabbing for their favorites. Stories being told, the air filled with laughter. These were some of my fondest memories.

Old Bay Shrimp Boil Skewers; 2014 Jane Bonacci, The Heritage Cook

I thought it would be fun to take what is normally the main course and side dishes all in one and made in a pot big enough to feed a crowd, and turn it into an appetizer or first course. You can be as generous as you want, but if you are making the whole progressive meal we’ve put together, you’ll definitely want to keep this first course small.

A typical shrimp boil combines shrimp, potatoes, corn on the cob, onions, and seafood seasoning blend. The most common and popular seasoning is Old Bay. If you haven’t tried it, it is a blend of great flavors that make nearly everything taste better. I don’t think I would add it to cereal or sweet desserts, but just about anything else, LOL. Oh, and Old Bay is conveniently gluten-free!

Old Bay Shrimp Boil Skewers; 2014 Jane Bonacci, The Heritage Cook

At the beach you throw everything in the same pot, in stages, starting with the things that take longest to cook and adding the shrimp right at the end. To make it easier to serve this at a party, I cooked everything in the same pot, but added each ingredient, one at a time, scooping them out and setting them aside as they were done before adding the next ingredient. This lets you cook each one perfectly.

Assemble the skewers and set them on a plate with a small serving of the corn, potatoes and tomatoes. Or you can do as I did and serve the skewers over a bowl of the vegetables. Each person will have a delicious and easy to eat appetizer.

Old Bay Shrimp Boil Skewers; 2014 Jane Bonacci, The Heritage Cook

For the cocktail sauce, I threw together a quick blend of ketchup, Old Bay, horseradish, onion powder, lemon juice, and black pepper, juggling ingredients until I got the flavor I was looking for. I love cooking spontaneously and coming up with a new treat!

Have fun creating a mini shrimp boil for your next party And be sure to click on the links below to see the whole progressive supper we put together!

Old Bay Shrimp Boil Skewers; 2014 Jane Bonacci, The Heritage Cook

Old Bay Shrimp Boil Skewers (Gluten-Free)
Yields 8
Traditional shrimp boils have everything cooking at the same time in the same pot. I cooked the ingredients one after the other so that everything could be made ahead of time. You have all of the traditional flavors and can have it all ready before your guests show up.
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  1. 2 quarts water
  2. 3 ears corn, shucked and cleaned
  3. 1/4 cup Old Bay* seasoning, plus more for sprinkling if you want
  4. 1 tbsp kosher or sea salt
  5. 1 tbsp Ancho chile powder or other mild chile powder (gluten-free)
  6. Juice of 1 lemon
  7. 8 small red-skinned potatoes
  8. 1 large onion, trimmed and peeled, cut into quarters
  9. 2 cloves garlic, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
  10. 2 tbsp butter
  11. 4 to 6 smoked Andouille sausages (gluten-free) or other smoked sausage (gluten-free)
  12. 1 to 2 lb unpeeled raw shrimp, deveined
  13. 2 cups cherry tomatoes, rinsed and cut into wedges
  14. Chopped Italian flat leaf parsley, finely chopped, optional
  15. Seafood cocktail sauce, optional (gluten-free)
  16. Lemon wedges, for garnishing
  1. In a large saucepan (4-quart or larger), bring the water to a boil. Cook the corn for about 4 minutes, turning as needed to cook all the kernels. Use tongs to remove them from the water and set aside to cool slightly.
  2. Add the Old Bay, salt, chile powder, and lemon juice and bring the water back to a boil. Add the potatoes, onions, and garlic. Reduce the heat to medium to hold a low boil. Cook until the potatoes are tender, about 8 minutes depending on their size. When you can easily pierce them all the way to the center with a slender knife, use tongs to remove them and set aside.
  3. While the potatoes are cooking, cut the corn off the cobs and transfer to a medium saucepan. When the potatoes are cool enough to handle, cut into small bite-sized pieces. Add to the corn. Add butter and warm lightly until butter is melted; Toss until the potatoes and corn are evenly coated. Set aside.
  4. Return the seasoned water to a low boil and add the sausage to the water to heat through. When fully warmed, add the shrimp and cook just until they turn pink, about 2 to 3 minutes depending on the size. Immediately remove from the water using a strainer to scoop out the shrimp, sausages and any remaining onions. Drain thoroughly. Cut the sausages into 1-1/2 inch pieces.
  5. You can leave the shrimp as is and let your guests peel and eat (the traditional way) or peel and devein them before serving for easier eating. If I was serving this at a sit down dinner I would leave the shells on and make it more fun for my guests to get their hands in the food - everyone loves that! If I was serving this at a stand up cocktail party, I would clean the shrimp so they are much easier to eat with one hand.
  6. Everything can be cooked ahead to this point and refrigerated up to a couple of hours. When ready to serve, lightly reheat the vegetables, sausages and shrimp. They can all be served at room temperature, but warm enough so the butter is still melted.
  7. To serve as shown in the photos, thread the shrimp and sausage pieces onto skewers. Spoon the corn and potatoes into serving bowls. Add some of the tomatoes over the top of the vegetables and set the skewers across the edges of each bowl. Tuck a couple of lemon wedges into each bowl. Sprinkle the top with the chopped parsley and serve with cocktail sauce if desired.
  1. Yield: about 6 to 8 appetizer servings; about 4 main course servings
  2. * Old Bay is gluten-free
The Heritage Cook ® http://theheritagecook.com/

Create a New Tradition Today!

This recipe is part of our virtual monthly supper club, Progressive Eats. See the links below for more inspiration and great recipes!

Fried Green Tomatoes with Smoked Tomato Basil Aioli from Megan Myers, Stetted
Shrimp, Grilled Peach, Quinoa Salad from Jamie Schler, Life’s a Feast
Creamy Cole Slaw from Milisa Armstrong, Miss in the Kitchen
Maque Choux Soup from Ansh Dhar, Spice Roots
Creole Style Smothered Chicken from Lana Taylor Stuart, Never Enough Thyme
Jalapeno Cornbread & How to Freeze It from Julie Grice, Savvy Eats
Bacon and Caramelized Onion Creamed Corn  from Barb Kiebel, Creative Culinary
Spicy Succotash from Jenni Field, Pastry Chef Online
Watermelon Lemonade from Lauren Keating, Healthy Delicious
Key Lime Pound Cake from Barbara Schieving, Barbara Bakes
Banana Cream Cheesecake Pie from Liz Weber Berg, That Skinny Chick Can Bake

And look at what’s coming up!

Aug 26th – Summer Barbecue hosted by Liz at That Skinny Chick Can Bake

Sept 30th – Tex Mex hosted by Milisa at Miss in the Kitchen

Oct 28th – Cocktail Party hosted by Barb at Creative Culinary

Nov 25th – Holiday Desserts hosted by Jenni at Pastry Chef Online

Let’s connect! If you love The Heritage Cook, you can follow me on Pinterest, Facebook, or Twitter. If you ever need any entertaining or cooking advice, need to alter a recipe for gluten-free, or want recipe suggestions, don’t hesitate to email me (theheritagecook@comcast.net). Thanks for reading!

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Thank You!

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  1. says

    As I read this I am looking up the Old Bay seasoning online. This dish looks fabulous and what great memories of perfect summers gone by!

    • Jane Bonacci says

      The only things that would have made this better Julie, would have been the smell of the ocean and sand beneath our feet. It was really fun to make!

  2. says

    This takes me back to those years when I lived in the South and a summer vacation was not real until we had a shrimp boil. Looks absolutely AMAZING Jane.

    Thanks for joining me in this event Jane; I’m so looking forward to seeing what everyone does each month!

    • Jane Bonacci says

      For anyone on the Eastern Seaboard or Gulf Coast, this is a summertime ritual. But it translates beautifully in California too, LOL! So happy to be part of this amazing team Barbara, thanks for including me!

  3. says

    I love Old Bay but I’ve only had a shrimp boil once. I love the idea of these, especially because they’re scaled down to a family meal size!

    • Jane Bonacci says

      This is actually doable at home Megan, but next time I will make sure there are others here to help us eat it :-)

    • Jane Bonacci says

      It is a great all-around seasoning blend that you will probably really enjoy Barbara. A little strong right out of the can, when diluted in the simmering water, or added to ketchup to make the sauce, it is just perfect!

  4. says

    Whoa, just pile those babies on my plate! What a marvelous appetizer…I’d be happy to have these skewers as my whole dinner!

    • Jane Bonacci says

      Liz – my husband brought home a ton of shrimp for just the two of us so it did turn into our dinner last night. :-)

  5. says

    I adore Old Bay Seasoning and have used it in almost everything. Great in a Bloody Mary, which reminds me of your lovely cocktail sauce. Sounds like we cook the same way–spontaneously. Great dish, Jane!

  6. says

    Oh, I love how you captured the traditional shrimp boil meal all in one dish! I love the flavors and they do remind me of summer vacations! And such a clever was to make this a one-pot meal! I love it! You have really captured summer in the south!

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